Friday, May 18, 2012

Latino/Spanish Artists at Charlton: Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez (1) - Just Married 74

The December 1970 issue of Charlton's Just Married (#74) features a 10-page story about a young couple possibly approaching divorce. The cover is one of Charlton's thrifty collage covers made up of panels of interior artwork from this particular story. The title "Why Am I Here?" reflects the confusion and uncertainty the wife feels as she arrives in Reno to meet up with a divorce lawyer. This, and the other Charlton romance stories by Garcia-Lopez that I have in my collection, really make me appreciate this type of work produced by this well-known artist, the bulk of whose material appears in DC superhero books. To me, this romance material is of superior quality, possibly because it was earlier and he had more time. But looking at his later stuff you can see an evolution towards a more stylized product, a bit like the way Alex Toth's earlier work was more realistic while his later style more 'cartoony' - different, simpler. The story is quite solid, and revolves around the misinterpretation of the husband's actions - his wife believes he has fallen for a young woman whose own husband runs around on her. On the verge of going through with the divorce, she sees the truth - her husband was indeed just helping an unfortunate - she hadn't given him the opportunity to explain what was going on, and was rather ready to jump to a certain conclusion - the kind of uncertainty about a spouse that one might expect early on in a marriage. To be fair, though, he could have handled the situation a lot better, and done more to ensure his wife wouldn't be put in such a difficult situation where she didn't know what was happening.

I like the underwater kiss, the lighthouse panel, the review of how the couple got together, gorgeous 'reflection on a pillow' panel on page 6 of the story, nice clothes, beautiful lady, handsome guy. Very nice.

A couple more examples of this stage of Garcia-Lopez's career drawing Charlton romance stories will be featured in the next couple of Out Of This World posts. Sequential Crush has also featured José Luis García-López in a couple of posts, including an interview:

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